The Northwest Arkansas Council has partnered with Kenzie Academy to bring the online platform’s tech training programs to Arkansas. This marks the first national expansion for Kenzie Academy, an Indianapolis-headquartered company that offers curriculum in software engineering, UX engineering and UX design.
With the help of a Walton Family Foundation grant, Kenzie will launch its online platform in Arkansas and work to establish a regional presence. According to a news release, the goal of the partnership is to train “hundreds of individuals in the latest technology skills and connect them with local jobs” in order to build Arkansas’ tech economy and build a talent pipeline.
“This is a first of its kind partnership for Kenzie,” Kenzie Academy CEO and co-founder Chok Ooi said in a statement. “We believe high-quality education should be available to the best and brightest, regardless of where they live, or what their financial circumstances are. We are thrilled to expand Kenzie’s accessible and inclusive tech training offerings to Arkansas and rapidly respond to the state’s efforts to get people back to work.”
This goal of creating a talent pipeline aligns with other recent efforts that the Northwest Arkansas Council has spearheaded. In mid-November, the organization launched an initiative to attract top entrepreneurial and STEM/STEAM talent by offering $10,000 and other benefits for individuals that applied and moved to the Northwest Arkansas area.
“As part of the Council’s Information Technology (IT) Workforce Development Strategy, we prioritized developing the region’s tech talent to help companies throughout the Northwest Arkansas region fill open IT jobs,” Northwest Arkansas Council president and CEO Nelson Peacock said. “This partnership with Kenzie Academy will create valuable workforce training opportunities and provide a robust pipeline of talent for our companies – a critical component for the region’s future economic growth.”
According to its website, Kenzie Academy’s software engineering course is a full-time, 12 months long program, while the UX design course is a part-time, six months long program. The website lists the tuition for the software engineering program and the UX design program as $24,000 and $10,900, respectively.